Play as an alien trying to return to his spaceship without getting caught by the cops in Stealth Kart, a new tactical racing puzzle game from solo developer halfmule. Here are my first impressions.
A copy of this game was provided for the purposes of this review.
Stealth Kart is as straightforward as it sounds. You ultimately play as an alien who is trying to reach the finish line of the course in order to escape, but there are police cars patrolling and if you get within their line of sight they will pursue you, and you lose if they catch you. As you progress through the game and the courses become more puzzle-like, you will befriend others to help you escape with different vehicles that can offer assistance.
One new friend has a ramp car that will allow you to jump over obstacles, one fires boxes to cover vehicles and block their view, and another has a donut truck that can float in water to cross areas your alien can’t and can also distract the cops with the sugary goodness of the truck’s contents. You can switch between the cars and control them to best lead you to victory, but beware that your accomplices can also run into trouble with the law if you’re not careful.
The puzzle portion of Stealth Kart I believe is the best part so far because they are actually pretty challenging at times, which can lead to frustration but ultimately weren’t the cause of my frustration. I never ran into a course I couldn’t figure out, just sometimes it takes more thought than expected.
My personal frustration came with the handling, specifically of the alien’s car because it is meant to be fast which can send it into wild turns if you’re not careful. The second level was for me the most frustrating because of that, where even the lightest touch on a turning key would send the car wildly off course. This is ultimately more of an operator error, but I felt it was worth noting.
Aesthetically speaking, the art serves its purpose. I think it fits the overall vibe of the game, which is good, but I subjectively am not fond of it. It doesn’t negatively affect gameplay which is good, I just got tired of looking at it after a while.
Overall, Stealth Kart is a solid concept with good gameplay and room for expansion and improvement. It’ll be cool to see what highmule does with the game in the future.
This post is an Indie Game Collective Showcase
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